communication

Best Smartphone Apps for Freelancers

Technology today is almost taking over our lives, especially if you freelance and have to do things “on the go”, wherever you may be! We seem to be on our phones constantly, but in order to minimise the amount of equipment we carry around with us, and optimise the time we spend on our gadgets, there are some apps available to enable us to do work effectively, so there is less to do when we return to the office. Free Wi-fi is available in many places and whether you’re sitting in a café somewhere or on a park bench in the sunshine, you can almost always be working at the same time.

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First of all, for someone who manages hundreds of passwords and websites, LASTPASS PREMIUM is a brilliant app, and even though you can get this free on a laptop, upgrading to premium for $12 is highly convenient, especially if you are constantly using your smartphone/tablet. It enables us to spend less time tapping in passwords and more time actually working.

If you manage more than one/two Facebook pages and Twitter profiles, HOOTSUITE is essential if you need to post your updates and information daily in all these different places. The sheer convenience of this social media management tool is worth the $5.99/month and better than similar apps out there.

SKYPE is another essential app for freelancers to call and IM customers, friends and family. It can be on your phone and laptop at the same time – for the sheer convenience of being able to see messages and calls even when you are sitting relaxing and don’t want to log on. It shows sent and received messages on both devices. Ideal to keep in touch with everyone all the time! For quick IM WHATSAPP is also a real jewel!

To accommodate all your email accounts in one place EBUDDY is perfect for this. It can accommodate all your instant message profiles and your emails in one place. This is a real timesaver and so handy!

To keep a tab on all your tasks/to do lists WUNDERLIST is a perfect app for this. Freelancers tend to juggle several balls at once, this is brilliant for keeping track of everything in once place quickly and conveniently.

Freelancers always need to keep a very close eye on the time, and maximise their concentration, so POMODORO is an ace app for this. Once you set the timer, you can focus entirely on the task at hand and know exactly what time you’ve spent on the job.

Accessing files easily and quickly is also crucial, that is why DROPBOX is another essential app to have on your smartphone and laptop. It enables quick and easy access to files when you are out and about.

Another definite must-have for all you freelancers in the UK, is JOURNEY PRO, as being a freelancer on the go, travelling is essential. Having this little gem on your phone enables you to plan your journey, times and map route before you set off, you have a good idea of where your destination is and how long it is going to take you to get there before you set off – brilliant for time management. WAZE is another useful travel app – featuring real time updates by the actual users – and lastly a Berlin based startup WAYMATE does a brilliant job at comparing travel plans Europe-wide!

Although some of these apps have a small cost, you can certainly save time with many of them, and as we all know “time is money”. Just be careful you don’t get into the habit of being constantly addicted to your smartphone. Even freelancers need a break sometimes!

Do you have a great app you use for Freelancing? Why not let us know!

 

  mesogio   Dec 16, 2013   2014 predictions, apps, Content marketing, digital media, freelance, social media   Comments Off on Best Smartphone Apps for Freelancers Read More

Instant, intimate and intrusive

Companies are increasingly faltering then failing on the digital communications front while they cling on to an outdated concept of corporate comms as enshrined by the precious company policy line.

Seeing the forest for the trees

Seeing the forest for the trees

The jig is up. The curtain has fallen and we’ve caught you with your underwear down.

By its very nature social media is instant, intimate and intrusive. Whether or not they perceive it as a help or a hindrance, companies need to recognise that social media is a force to be reckoned with and consumers will not back down.

Recently, Groupon co-founder and chief executive Andrew Mason sent an email to the organization’s staff to announce that he was leaving, he clearly didn’t hold back; “After four-and-a-half intense and wonderful years as CEO of Groupon, I’ve decided that I’d like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding – I was fired today.”

Refusing to tow the line, Mason must have left the comms team in a head spin, drafting out all sorts of press statements and running things through legal quicker than you could say ‘Fired!’

Mason’s story is one of intrigue. Even if the former CEO doesn’t go down as a martyr in his cause, he certainly held up a mirror to the nature communications. As communicators we have a duty to present a company in its best possible light, however, the way communications is developing, particularly social media, businesses can no longer seek shelter behind the rehearsed and exhausted company line. Consumers appreciate that things may not always run smoothly but more so they appreciate honesty.

Business leaders and chief executives are finding themselves becoming the face of their brands. Whether or not they were dragged to such echelons kicking and screaming, that’s where they are and they must embrace it. Social media doesn’t allow for a retraction or a quick delete. There is always someone watching or waiting in the wings for an answer. So give them one. Acknowledging weaknesses is a way to maintain integrity and more so a human face behind all the corporate speak.

Trying to subterfuge your way through the public domain should be left to the spokespeople over at the European Commission – Businesses should not expect such nondescript reactions. Take for example, the mass firing that occurred at HMV earlier this year, angry workers were tweeting live from the HR office; “There are over 60 of us being fired at once! Mass execution of loyal employees who love the brand.”

HMV maintained the usual corporate game-face through its administrators Deloitte who echoed doleful words of regret that “such decisions are always difficult and that it is a necessary step in restructuring the business to enhance the prospects of securing its future as a going concern.”

The response was met with customers who commented that they had no sympathy with HMW for the way they’d dealt with their employees and even going so far as to praise free-streaming and illegal downloading of online material.

Corporate communications has helped companies to save face in tough times, however, in these times, companies must not fail to realise they are dealing with a consumer with a lot more tenacity and digital tools than ever before.

 

 

 

  mesogio   Mar 21, 2013   digital media, infographics, journalism, social media, Social Media Strategy   Comments Off on Instant, intimate and intrusive Read More

Eurospeak – Untangling the web of words

Deconstruct the sentence and reconstruct the meaning

Words. They’re everywhere we look, and what’s even more alarming is the amount of jargon-style prose, all in the name of grabbing attention.

Deconstruct-the-sentence-and-reconstruct-the-meaning

Deconstruct-the-sentence-and-reconstruct-the-meaning

As European Institutions, companies and PR gurus would have you believe, at least from their media releases, the more text the better. Surely the key to reaching the man on the ground, or the more arduous task of striking a chord within the average citizen is to drown them in information. Every last bite, or rather every last word. In short this is not the way forward, and in fact it is not the way at all.

Unless your passion is academia and you have a penchant for scrutinising the meaning in every last word, the rest of us just want to hear it and get on with it. Extensive texts require a great deal more attention and brain engagement than most consumers are willing to offer.

So cut out the unnecessary, cut out the far–reaching phrases, which you’d like to think appeal to a better place. The fact is meaningless words do more to bore or disinterest the reader than to catch their attention. Realise this – your readers are busy, checking their phones, buying some lunch, or even staring at a goldfish. The way to engage with them is not to pile more on to their already overloaded brains.

Take for example the following ‘stock phrases’:

  • It will always remain of critical importance
  • Time after time we’ve demonstrated
  • It is our intention to maintain…

You may think of these as essential packaging and of course we don’t advocate being crude. However, we do advocate appreciating the minimal time and attention span in which you have to make an impact. So use it wisely. Use it effectively.

Essentially, keep it simple and keep it relevant, this way, you might actually have a shot at getting that elusive return on investment or invoking a sense of curiosity on that new launch that’s “for want of a better word,” – clearly, bound to take the world by storm.

  mesogio   Feb 13, 2013   Copyediting, Copywriting, editorial, EU, infographics, simplification, social media   Comments Off on Eurospeak – Untangling the web of words Read More

Guardian reporting EU commits racist foul in video

The European commission has been forced to withdraw a high-budget video promoting the EU amid accusations that it depicts other cultures in a racist manner. A row broke out after the enlargement directorate of the European commission, which is responsible for the expansion of the EU, released a video clip that was designed to appeal to young voters. The video, entitled Growing Together, features a white woman dressed in yellow – the colour of the stars of the EU – walking calmly through a warehouse. As a gong sounds, she looks behind her as an aggressive Chinese-looking man shouting kung fu slogans jumps down in the style of the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. As he moves towards her, an Indian-looking man in traditional dress wielding a knife levitates towards her. He is a master of kalaripayattu, a martial art from the southern Indian state of Kerala. As she deals with him, a black man with dreadlocks cartwheels towards her in the style of capoeira, the Brazilian martial art. The woman stares at the men. She then multiplies herself to form a circle around the men who drop their weapons and sit down. The woman’s yellow outfit then turns into the stars of the EU. The video shows the words: “The more we are, the stronger we are.” It then says: “Click here to learn more about EU enlargement.” (The Guardian)
  mesogio   Mar 07, 2012   advertising, digital media, EU, standards   Comments Off on Guardian reporting EU commits racist foul in video Read More

using timelines in videos

Plenty of companies, NGOs and public institutions use video for their web activities nowadays. Some don’t do it too well. 

These entities believe that putting together a melange of all their successes into a 5 minute video, that potential clients and partners will immediately run to their screen, save the word file they were just working on, put their feet up and try and figure out the mess they have just been shown.

The simple truth is, is that they simply do not have time for that. And that’s not an obnoxious statement, nor is it merely my opinion. Here look at this.

A recent – smart example of how effective video can be presented over the web, in a nutshell, with clear timeline usage – is a company mesogio have worked with in the past – JWT. 

Take a look at the simplicity or the graphics and see if you remember anything at the end of the 3 something minute video.Or perhaps you’d like to fast forward to the part of the year you are most interested in.

here’s the vid…


 

And while we’re on the subject of online time – have you got some for another very cool vid by JWT with some predictions for 2012? It’s worth it. Enjoy!

  mesogio   Jan 03, 2012   2012 predictions, advertising, digital media, timelines   Comments Off on using timelines in videos Read More